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later, the council on foreign relations talks about u.s. aid to egypt. "washington journal" is next. ♪ ♪ host: good morning, elide view of the u.s. capitol and it is back to work week for congress. it is a busy legislative week as congress tries to wrap up a lot of business. in presidential politics, the president continues his two-day bus trip to florida and vice president joe biden is in ohio. we will have live coverage of him later in the day and mitt romney is back in ohio later today as the race for the key battleground state continues. on tuesday, the campaigns have
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agreed to cease any campaign rallies to reflect on the 11th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. we will begin on the sunday morning, september 9. another piece about the debt and deficit -- we want your thoughts on the deficit crisis being put off. the numbers are on your screen.
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let's begin with the front-page story of "the washington post." also in the peace -- also in the piece --
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in the final passage of the story in the final passage of the story -- bob will -- bob woodward will be joining us september 17. let's go to our independent line, good morning. caller: good morning. congress is filled with weasels, professional politicians, who is number one
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priority is to get reelected. they want to play santa claus and constantly give things to their constituents. that is why we are where we are at. professional media people are the ones that let them get away with ridiculous things and doing these ridiculous activities and never asking them how they will pay for it. host: regardless of who was in the white house and to was in the senate, both parties need to work on this, will that? -- will they? caller: congress only does something when there is a crisis and that's what it will take. we continually print money and pretend everything is fine and give everything to everybody and we are headed off the cliff. we will go to the republican line, good morning.
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caller: good morning. they talk about the debt crisis and our budget. do they ever talk about paying back china tax when do we start paying back what we owe? we will go off a fiscal cliff and it is pretty scary and we're watching obama and by and say not to worry about it. hope and change -- i hope to see what happens with more hope and change. host: you concede this photograph from inside the white house. mitch mcconnell and check looby. this is a meeting that took place inside the cabinet room.
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they remember that inside friday afternoon the have a news conference which he came into the conference for an agreement he thought he had but failed. the president wanted additional taxes. the republican speaker said that was not possible. bob will be with us on monday morning to take your calls on his next book. vivian is on the phone. everything is being held up by the congress. they are not try to let anything go right. they said they want obama to fail. if this stuff as again, it is all because of the republican congressman. they want anything to go through. it is up to the republicans. thank you. host: john lason is the chair
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back from the convention in dealing with enough issues. the entitlement programs and a big program. medicare. democrats expected. i understand the affordable care act keeps it solvent for the first term. going out for the, when will we see an independent plan? host: additional 80 years. under the romney plan and will be a change as we know it by 2016. i think president clinton outlined that well. i want to dwell on this for a moment. i think not only as it relates
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to medicare but also medicaid. what that means to senior citizens who are medicare reliant who are also impacted by the severe medicaid cuts. the need for nursing homes. when you are at 17% of gross domestic costs, should we start drawing down from medicare devices, the trial bar or should we begin with beneficiaries? they will start in the area of making sure of starting a bench of the affordable care at to make sure a we get away with all the specific problems including payments and with eddie any fish here is. most notably in the follow up reports of bees and a waste.
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i am a big state. why not work together. this is the annoying problem we have pared would not work together to take the best of both words as mr. -- something mr. romney did. to put together a plan that makes medicare longer and look at the specifics coming together by part assembly to make sure we have a plan that will take care of those most and need. host: the atlanta journal constitution is focusing on the issue of medicare as a voters said the various claims of the president and it meant romney appeared both -- sharp
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differences emerged of how to achieve that goal. this editorial cartoon appeared we pass the benchmark of 16 trillion dollars. the debt cholesteric as the democrats were convening, focusing on the debt to mile as well. the dead and the deficit one of the key issues that fell between the speaker of the house, the president and other leaders, the subject of a new -- are you ready? caller: i would like you to go to we never had a balanced budget or a surplus. it was under dwight eisenhower in 1957. thank you.
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host: this is front-row said as vice president dick cheney said, the deficit did not matter. much playacting is going on host: thank you for taking my call. what is the role of in this country. i came from africa. i came from nigeria. before i came over here, how our -- they are in jail. i watch how the president played the role a spectator.
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making a pledge that if you get a message, -- paying taxes, at look, i work to good jobs and i am willing to pay a little bit more to have my country. for people to go out of business. host: he says if you love your country, you will pay your taxes. not in the cayman islands. from the photograph of the washington post story of 2011, as the president and vice president walking on the vice -- the law in dealing with congressional leaders. the inside story of the struggle to keep congress from controlling the outcome of the
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debt ceiling crisis. the final sentence of the story is that it was put off, something that congress will be dealing with after the election. the so-called fiscal cliff. getting your reaction to the reporting period what it means to the campaign and also the new congress next year. caller: all the questions about medicare and social security and health care, if you want to fix these, the fastest way is to remove the cap and a means test all of these with the payroll tax. all of the income these people have, if you had two children and you had one with all brand new shoes and one kid with no
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shoes, whose shoes would you buy? he would buy the one that did not have any shoes. you need to start at $100,000. after that -- 250,000, you do that the $250,000. host: look at these levels tomorrow, mitt romney back in ohio. the president will be an ohio as well. the rust belt miracle, why the battle to take credit for the above average economy could swing the election. a look at the auto industry, manufacturing and the real building of other industries.
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we will try one more time. caller: i feel that the republicans are holding us up. president obama tried several times to work with republicans to get this problem solved. they would not let us tax the super rich. now they are holding him now. he may not be able to get anything done and unless the republicans choose to do what is right and that compromise with him. we will not get any jobs or anything done because the republicans choose not to work with this president. the republicans have to work and compromise. it is my opinion.
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host: the struggling out there are not interested in the national debt, they are worried about their own debts. a president cornered from the price of politics. dorothy is on the phone from new york. good morning. caller: how are you? you know, we look at democrats, republicans and independents. this all boils down to doing what is right. when we vote, we boatpeople in office to do for us. that is why we put them in office. i do not know if we are living a lie, or what? we keep repeating the same thing over and over here we are so easily blind sided.
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obama ran with everything he had. i raised three daughters. but it worked out. i ran and i did my best with what i had. my three doctors graduated so i did not have any money. without stopping iran. things are worked out. the bible tells us, do not like to see which way the would will fall. just do. you never know if it all works out. look at the war for example. the war was taking so much money from us. so many people came back. that is my that would have been dished out every day. and it stops. if you are not embracing the man, he is not running the country by himself. the congress gets the other
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votes. host: does the congress have any responsibility for job creation? how can the president get anything passed when they want him to fail? now that the conventions are over, the traditional bob we have sinned, the headline is the betting bump. the president at 46%. -- where the battle state's bar. michigan, ohio, virginia, north carolina, florida, and in new hampshire. these are the states that will determine whether the president is reelected. the president has 221 of votes. mitt romney has 191 leaving 126 votes in these doesn't toss up states.
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>> good morning. this is a good show a about the crisis. the reason i say that is because we have been having that as one of your callers said before a long time. we have not had a balanced bulked -- a balanced budget. if the people do not realize congress -- we have to change congress. republicans are not going to be able to vote either. once the congress sells us out to the mega millionaires, they will not be able to vote. anything they go against the republicans -- you can bet your life on this. republicans will kill social security and medicare. and the republicans or call and try to work -- they will start complaining. it will not be able to change anything because they well sell
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our government to the multi millionaires. host: thank you for the call. good morning. as we look at this story from the washington post. republicans are forcing the risk of a default on us. caller: i a cliche your program. i think the people out there oftentimes forget we are all americans. i often wonder if they remember john kennedy's came as " open " ask not what your country can do, but ask what you can do for your country. with all the ideas of social security and medicare, if people would realize nobody is going to get rid of that. we are so deeply into that, there is no way can do away with medicaid, medicare or
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social security. when the the democrats say the republicans are doing nothing, and they need to remember the first two years of the administration, he had a democratic congress. what did he do? host: the big entitlement programs that accounted for well over half of the budget, how do you deal with that? how did you rent costs and so you can bring out what is a $16 trillion debt? caller: i believe paul ryan has the answer. if people just trust -- we just need to have the faith. i do believe paula ryan has the budget with his answer. host: paul ryan is a denture
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oregon for the debates that will take place early next week. the vice president debate in mid october a denture ky. all of the planning of the republicans by democrats comes down to one central point. obama was not able to lead -- clinton and did it. the strike is risky for the mayor and the chief. each could feel the heat if there is a lengthy period on the campaign trail in virginia. he greeted fans at nascar and talked about spending. they said the military would be sent to none clamming of the president is reelected, as many as one her 30,000 jobs could be cut as part of the budget cutbacks. was it. by they are agreed to by members of congress. atlanta is next, the democrats'
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line. host: i would like to ask the question, why is everybody electing mitt romney getting away with not revealing his taxes. he has done something very wicked. he is hiding from the american public. can you imagine if obama was hiding taxes? this country made this man revealed his birth certificate and everything else. mitt romney is wicked. i want to know where he is getting away with it. host: desist date of the advantage is obama. a much clearer path to winning according to top advisers. the post convention bounce they hoped for fell well short of
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expectations and privately lamented the polling numbers in ohio are working in the president's favor. they said it their map has many more roads to victory. they see them -- they see eye to eye on their belief that the election will come down whether they can persuade the voters say understand ordinary people and their solutions are marginally better for turning things around economically. mary is on the phone from kansas city. host: the republicans would never do anything because they side with -- date signed the grover marquest pledge.
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i would love to see romney taxes. i do not know why you are letting him get away with that. host: he has said he is releasing two years and nothing more. my guess is it will come up again. mitt romney is on "meet the press," on friday. that can be heard on the compilation of the sunday morning programs at name. c-span radio is heard coast to coast. worst week in washington according to aaron of blake, the party conventions. political conventions used to be exciting and serve a purpose, mainly picking presidential candidates. the contracts -- jeff is on thed
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city, michigan. caller: good morning. god bless the troops. i would like to give a shout out to them. i would like to give a quick history lesson to citizens who are continuously repeating the -- that the court house talking points. it is really nice how obama has managed to put the country together. it is funny, i have been listening for a half hour, nobody has talked about the democrats compromising.
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when they put the country together, they put the senate as the cooling dish. if a leader got into office whose ideas are too radical, it was not a dictatorship. if obama had not come in and it scared half the country in his first two years, congress would have been read elected democrat and you could have the communist utopia you dreamed of. thank you. host: obama campaign hits the road trying to rally convention energy. mitt romney who is back on the trail to mar a denture ohio. paul ryan who is in ohio preparing for the debates says, sounds like steve took the kool- aid. the debt is a minor issue. we have a revenue problem. comparatively out texas republicans very low.
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glenn is on the phone on the democrats' line. caller: good morning. at three things. you take a look at the $16 trillion debt, you need to contribute $10 trillion to george bush. clinton left him and a surplus. no. two, bob woodward, i did not trust anything he says. everything -- every election cycle he comes up with a bug that has to do with what the president says. that is all hearsay. he just takes what other people tells them and heat comes away with true. because of the fact he does that
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on a periodic basis, i do not believe anything he says. he does not have any real facts. when it comes down to republicans being in the congress, you have a way to fix it. the same way they got voted into the congress two years ago, you have the time and it devotes to vote them out. if you want to make sure the congress is controlled by democrats, go to the polls and vote. that is why things will not get done. if you go to the polls and vote, that will not be a problem for the next two years. host: he will have a chance to hear bob woodward in his own words next monday. his book is called -- it is out this week. the title is "the price of
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politics." we will cover the events with him on c-span 2 and book tv. the campaign has not yet announced who will play the role of joe biden. polyp ryan said his counterpart would be somebody who knows what he is doing. we did learn chris van holland will be playing paul ryan in the debate preparations. c-span will have coverage of all the bases as part of our convention and campaign coverage. we will have a debate hub set up next month. on the issue of the deficit crisis being put off until after the election based on what happened last summer as negotiations collapsed between the white house and congress.
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caller: i am calling from gary, indiana. so a veteran. -- i am a a veteran. i met with the cia. i did not know what i was facing. i am a student of history. i am an american. yes 08 -- i love this country, just like my grandfather and uncles did. mitt romney is the biggest pretender i have ever seen. propaganda is the best way to convince people to believe a lie. -- helook at this policy is suggesting you can put a
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band-aid on cancer until you go home. it is ok. stagflation is when you have high unemployment conditions simultaneously with high inflation. this cannot be fixed in four years. this is cancers. for him to suggest the man did not fix it, he is lying. >> $10 a intercuts. they did not bite, enough's said. crystal has the editorial entitled up a " speak up, mit." bill kristol saying he needs to clarify the choices. the latest polls saying he had picked up some support, not up by 47% in one of the polls out
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today. you can get more by logging caller: i dunno how the democrats can take themselves seriously. they cannot even balance the budget. host: thank you for the call. in excess of $16 trillion, a president results that, something that will happen after the election. the crisis was put off based on the inability for congress to work out an agreement with the president. in other news, the secretary of state saying the sentence or and sen. nine are 10,000 miles away from
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the convention in charlotte, secretary clinton pledged they would lift cold or recensions on russia but did not address human rights legislation. congress is focusing on -- she is attending the economic cooperation summit meeting in place of campaigning for the president, she welcomed the ascension into the world trade association. she said the united states must normalize trade relations so american business can reap -- speakingrussia's in the new york times, this piece in the weekly review pointing out the democratic party realized one kind of history and it would like to realize another with hillary. it is time for a woman. both conventions there were
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ghosts of politics past, present, and teacher. next is he larry. caller: i have been watching this for -- ever since it started here. i have been paying close attention throughout my life. my parents were democrats. i have seen them, and i have seen -- i became an independent. i voted for the ban that would best do the job. well, in the last four years i have seen republicans cost the united states a downgrade adventure it's true -- in its credit rating. i have seen them block every opportunity to come to a budget
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conclusion. i have seen paul ryan and make statements that he knows are false. all through the whole scenario of the last four years. you would know he is lying about fax. as far as mitt romney goes, you're sorry sure he was a good governor. i am sure he is a good person. anybody who has to take one week or two to prepare to go into a debate with a standing president leaves me to wonder what he would do when he has to debate foreign policy on the spot. host: thank you for the call.
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at this point, math and arithmetic is why you do not sign pledges like the republicans did with grover norquist. let me go back to the new york times. $16 trillion debt and down below, four more years. back to your calls from cleveland. linda is on the fund. good morning to you. -- linda is on the phone. caller: what i want to say about this deficit -- nothing is more important than the health and vitality of the american citizens. they seem to have forgone that. our people are our assets. they want to put everything in front of the people. we have to keep the health, the
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vitality, the education, the opportunity all in front of the debt and deficit, then we will overcome the debt and the deficit. putting people back to work so they can pay taxes is the only way not to pay the debt. that is not right. let me say this, if you look at the 80 years of george bush, you come up with a net zero on job creation. the jobs that were sent out of the country and the jobs created. it is empirical. the evidence is there. then and they said it jobs, jobs, jobs. we elected them in in november 2010. they threw a way 600,000 jobs. everybody they could. host: thank you for the call.
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we will go to the republican line. caller: this is my first time calling. i just want to state, i know there are some people that come through that i guess -- truckdrivers, i work with them. they were heading to dakota. i guess that is where the energy -- there are going to north dakota right now. they are sending jobs overseas in this nation. they are decent paying jobs and things. we would not really have to worry about going after other people as the taxes. people could pay taxes and ease the burden a little bit. the ones who are working now. host: conservatives and republicans, they want to balance the budget without
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paying taxes. paint the picture for me. let's go back to the final sentence of the piece, which is why we are basing it on the deficit crisis. the long-term deficit crisis had not been solved, but nearly put off leaving the united states at the edge of the fiscal cliff where it remains today. this piece also available online at the washington post website. a couple of photographs at the new york times outside of orlando, florida. trying to turn the focus on medicare from jobs. he did so yesterday morning and had a sandwich shop also in florida. roy is on the phone on the independent line. caller: good morning. i love your program. at this is the second time i
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have been able to get through and talk to somebody there. you know, it is a really surprising -- i voted for republicans for different offices. i tried to be a good independent and open minded. this go around, yes or kind of concerned about the rhetoric i hear, especially from some of the people who call and to your outstanding program. they seem to think that the republicans have all the answers. paul ryan is some sort of savior. i have a news for you. you have not been paying attention. for one thing, it was just as recently as the previous administration, the bias president of that administration who said -- the advice he president of the administration he said deficits do not matter.
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they claim is what saved it from the cold war. i do not know if that is true, and i do not know if they can prove that. it now, all of a sudden deficits are a big issue. they are saying the obama and the democrats are going to bankrupt the country. well, i wish they would take a look that recent history. they have forgotten about george bush and what happened then putting two or is on a credit card and a prescription drug benefit not paid for. the list goes on and on. mitt romney is saying, we have to expand the military. what or is he planning? that is what i would like to know.
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he will tell us this morning when his plans are. he has not actually said -- host: thank you for that call. it you have access to sirius we are 119. ceases to -- -- stella says -- with the political conventions over, the battle to determine whether obama will determine reelection or whether mitt romney will become the president is fully engaged. the race has been deadlocked and each side predicting -- they will see no lift from their convention. mr. obama of's aides were
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hopeful that new polls would prove them wrong. -- mr. obama's aides were hoping it would prove them wrong. the first debate on october 3. the ads in the messages. the race for the money. right now the mayor romney campaign out raising the democrats and the president. ed is on the phone. caller: it is jobs being outsourced, including communist china. that is why we are in of this miss. my party the republicans, shame on you, selling your soul to grover norquist. we needed senate bill 2013.
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we had another chance with 3364 two months ago and republicans killed it. we need to end the corporate welfare through the tax code that encourages companies to take our jobs to other countries. that is why we are in this miss. host: until the election, let's drop the talking percent come up with original ideas to get the country back on track. new unemployment numbers show it dropped a point%, many people now leaving the workforce and unemployment rolls. the chair of the democratic caucus. guest: what does that mean as congress comes back next week? guest: it means we are heading
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in the right direction. what it means is republicans ought to take up the president was a jobs bill. that is the only jobs bill out there that puts to acquire 1 million people back to work. that is the essential thing that needed. we have not met often. i am insure both will verify that. what we ought to do is take the time -- we have heard repeatedly republicans talk about the number of people unemployed. it just seems their policies seem to be geared towards seeing the president fail rather than the president succeed. by that i mean putting people back to work. that should be the order of business. we should not leave until we get a jobs bill done. host: how many years did you give him before he brings caller: it:how many years before the reform votes?
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the 497 bills while we were in in the majority that they made sure did not get to the fore. the obstructionists' of the house as i said earlier. i think the public gets it. i think the president has demonstrated time and again. president clinton did a good job on how he reached out to the other side. just how difficult the situation they found themselves in. the direction we are heading down as well. this is an extraordinary period. i think president clinton summed it up well. but at the decoration on behalf of president obama and the direction he has as going in. look at the direction republicans would take us. they want to go backward. even the current house democrats in terms of creation, and zero.
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host: watch the entire program at 10:00 eastern time. can listen to it on c-span radio. another story on the front page. debt collectors cashing in on the still on the ground up. the number of people taking out government backed student loans has exploded. so has the number of people falling 12 months behind. it is up about one-third in the last five years. to get the money back, the last fiscal year paying $1.4 billion to collection agencies and other groups to hunt down the defaulters. back to your calls. how about we add a sales tax to wall street trade?
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the issue has not been put off until after the election. the book is called "the price of politics." he will be the guest next monday. david is on the phone. good morning. caller: a couple of previous callers touched on -- one mentioned if you had a job -- he had a job and paid a lot in taxes or would be able to have that job began to contribute to taxes. the real reason -- the republican caller mentioned about ending the tax to move jobs overseas. that has caused a big problem in the deficit. most of those jobs or high-
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paying jobs. they paid a high tax, too. everybody wonders why we have a deficit. come on, it is a pretty obvious. just to end incentives to move a business is overseas. that is common sense. to think that is a good thing proves positive they wanted this economic downturn to happen. dick cheney when they were in office, he said on a few occasions deficits do not matter. they do not matter. host: thank you for the call. people out of work not paying taxes, pointing out 400,000 people gave up looking for work and then to enter august according to abc news. we are taking your calls on bob
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woodward's book. caller: good morning. thank you for taking my call. i am an eisenhower republican. do you know what that is? host: sure do. caller: what is it for you? host: you tell me what it is for you. caller: the platform is common sense and the aim is the advancement of humanity. that is essentially it. with that being said, the census bureau said our entitlements are what is killing this country's economy. the congressional budget office said it the fastest growing entitlement is medicaid increasing by 40% a year.
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three things i have an artist is that we are having an increase of banter single mothers. the thing about that is they are having more children, there is more foreign women doing it, they are more calloused. that woman in california and that had 14 children. 17 are special needs -- 7 are special needs. host: one of your set up in court i cannot believe how anyone would vote for obama after he increased the debt. we will have more with bob woodward on the 17th with the new author whose book is released on tuesday, september 11. coming up, a columnist -- he is the author of a new book looking
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at voter fraud. later alan colmes with why he is proud to be a liberal. we will be back in just a moment. >> i am just angry. it is senseless to have people take on a position of the public trust and of these it. to do it in such a way to almost thumb and their noise it -- noses at individuals. it sounds like a stretch -- you can tell that to me. so a journalist. my job is to do what i do. people who really believe and say "the government is wrong. they're out to get me. there are trying to do it because i care about you.
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i support people." the supporters believe them. to me, that is despicable. >> tonight on "q &a." >> is joining us is a columnist from the national review and a co-author of a new book titled "who is counting?" he will talk about the book and just a moment. first-year assessment of the two party conventions. caller: the job of a convention is to rally the basin to present to the american people. i think of did that very effectively. president obama did have a big
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lift from bill clinton's speech. the best defense of the obama years you can imagine. however, i think his own speech thursday it was somewhat subdued. perhaps part of the reason is because we got the jobs numbers for august the next morning and they were pretty grim. four times the number of people who got jobs at enter august drop out of the labor force. that is an astonishing number. the president made -- he had a good kid said the convention, but the economic news keeps forcing him on the defense -- host: where does the campaign go from here? a lot of attention on the debates. will this come down to the debates or will there be other factors you are looking at? guest: the debates are
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important. there will be three debates, one vice-presidential debate. what concerns me is, we have literally transform the election day into election month. do you realize that on that friday last, a few days ago the first ballots went out and then to a north carolina. so many states are early voting that we will have millions of americans and voting before the first debate is held. i think that is appalling. imagine if you're suing somebody over a jury case. imagine this with the final stage of your lawyer making your case. three or four of the jurors said "i have had enough." that is appalling. we are having more and more people voting by convenience. i do not think that should be the norm. that means all of the early votes -- many get counted much
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later because they are paper ballots. we delay the reporting of the votes. i think we should have as much as possible election day. host: the very small number of undecided voters. if you look at the polling, it is less than 10%. guest: if you also point out the swing states, the once people are fighting about, mitt romney is running ads in 10 states. if you look at the people truly undecided imbricate down to 10 sewing states, you are probably talking about millions of dollars of ads being fought over 3% of the population. host: let's go to your book. you point out, many americans are convinced politicians cannot
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be counted to play by the rules. can you explain? guest: we saw a national star cut into the psyche after the recount. it was 47 days of uncertainty. did that of a the president was going to be pure there was suspicion and anger on both sides. that was and one state. what i fear is, if the polls are accurate and this race is grantee be as close as it looks, we have much more scrutiny of the process. there are 10,000 lawyers for both parties scrutinizing. i think we could see recounts and uncertainty in five states. we may not know who the president is after the election, just like with florida. the sad thing is because of the growth of lawyers, we no longer
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needed candidates to win with a margin of victory. they need to win with a margin beyond litigation. i think there are steps to minimize that between now and the election. host: some critics acclaimed charges of fraud have been overblown in the past. guest: my book makes two points. we need to reduce the bureaucratic blunders that can lead to uncertainty and partisan charges. secondly, voter fraud is a real issue. bill clinton made a speech on wednesday in which he attacked efforts to minimize voter fraud and improve the election. did you know three hours before he gave the speech, and a legislator and city councilmen and a police official were all convicted of voter fraud?
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that is astonishing. bill clinton can get up and say we do not need to protect against voter fraud when in his own state there is a scandal brewing. host: what prompted you to write the book? .
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>> we have 2 million dead people on the voter registration polls according to the pew research center. look, i believe we should honor the dead but shouldn't have representation without recent operation. -- respiration. if those people vote it reduces confidence in the election and we may see a selection in which the elections were won by a candidate who wasn't elected by the majority of the people voting. >> if you did commit a crime, if you did serve your tile and you're out, should you be able to vote again? guest: the constitution leaves that to all 50 states to make individual judgments. some states like virginia have very, very tough laws against felon voting, mississippi is another example. some of those are too tough. some states i think are too lax, and maine allows people serving time in jail to vote. i think that's too lenient. each state makes up that
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decision. the bottom line is the law is the law. whatever the state says about felon voting should be honored, and we have an example of how that i think that distorted on election. in minnesota 2008, al franken won a senate race from norm coleman, the seat was declared vacant for eight months, franken was seated after the 312 vote margin. after the election minnesota watchdog group had definitive evidence that 1100 felons voted illegally in that election. we don't know for sure how they voted because it's a secret ballot but when fox news interviewed a bunch of them, nine out of 10 vote fod franken, academic studies show they routinely vote democratic, bottom line, those felons shifted probably the result of the election and that had tremendous consequences, steve. i mean, omabacare passed in 2009 in the senate with no votes to spare. it had 60 votes, just enough to break the filibuster. that means we got omabacare. we would not have had
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omabacare in its current form without al franken's vote, that vote was in dispute as to whether or not he should have been seated. since then we've had the courts look at these cases of felons voting. you couldn't prosecute any felons who said look i made a mistake, i didn't know what i was doing, you couldn't prove intent. you had to be stupid enough if you were a felon voting illegally to say yeah, i voted illegally, i know what i was doing, what's it to you copper. you know what, we've had almost 200 felons convicted of voting illegally in that election, another 66 in the pipeline, dozens more being investigated. steve, it is possible we could get to a point where more people were convicted illegally of voting in that al franken election than the margin of victory. >> stephen rosenfeld wrote about your book, he says as you indicate that al franken did win by 312 votes out of 2.4 million cast but he also looked back at past issues of voting fraud in minnesota. he points out in 2009, there
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were 14 voter fraud convictions, in 2010, there were 11, the court records do not say when or which elections before 2008 and of course al franken wining in 2008, but those are small numbers, a dozen or so compared to the high numbers they're -- you're pointing to. >> most of the convictions were in 2010 or 2011. bottom line is they happened. they're documented. now, a lot of these things that -- a lot of these studies that reportedly say there are almost no voter fraud convictions, steve, those look at federal state stat *eugsic, federal courts, state courts. we have 356 counties, almost all voter fraud prosecutions are at the county level. i can assure you there are a significantly higher number of voter fraud elections in the county level than the federal and state level and the bottom line is this, voter fraud is like the tip of the iceberg. 1/10 above the sur tparbgs 9/10 below the surface. we don't catch all of it. look at easy it is to commit
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voter fraud. absentee ballot, very easily. we've had scandal after scandal on that. we had a alabama himer patient, people helping them fill out ballots without much input from them. also impersian nation fraud -- impersonation fraud. it's rare but easily done. if you voted for a dead person, the dead are not likely to complain. we saw in may, eric holder, attorney general of the united states who says voter i.d. laws are like the poll tax, he had a 22-year-old white kid with a beard and ear i think walk into the polling place and say do you have an eric holder at such and such an address, he was handed that ballot. he didn't vote, that would have been a crime but that shows you how easily someone can vote if you don't have them show i.d., don't clean up the voter polls. the pew research center, steve, liberal organization, says one out of eight voter
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registrations in this country are either invalid or have serious errors in them. that's unacceptable. it's the democratic bungling that can lead to a florida-style meltdown that i want to avoid. host: john fund is a columnist for national review, author of "who's counting, haw tproud-- fraudsters and bureaucrats put your vote at risk". before we get to the calls, would you agree that there are problems on both sides, both democrats and republicans in florida? guest: oh sure. let me gy you an example. there was a private company contracted by the florida secretary of state to weed out felon voters who weren't eligible to vote and it turns out the last was inaccurate in some cases and some people were prevented from voting. but a larger number, according to the palm beach post of the miami herald which did an extensive investigation, a larger number of felons who shouldn't have voted did vote. over 3000, apparently.
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and in a state where 537 votes divided al gore from george bush, both of those problems are very serious. they reduce confidence in the election. now we've seen that play again in florida this year, republican governor rick scott said look, i want to clean up the voter registration rolls of noncitizens so we had a case in fort myers where a local tv station, nbc affiliate found there were over 100 people in one county that said i can't serve on a jury because i'm a noncitizen but had registered to vote and in some cases voted. they want to clean up the voter registration rolls. they don't have the best information. so they went to the obama administration and said please give us your records, they were required to surrender those records, they didn't do it. there was a long court case, finally they gave the records over. this is an example of why this is needlessly polarized. we should agree on basic
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facts. we should make it easy to vote and hard to cheat. we can do both. we're america. sadly, we have i think two sides that seem to be talking past each other when the common sense, good government approach is let's streamline the voting process, reduce bureaucratic bundling and also make it charter -- hardtory cheat because there is cheating out there. i can give you example after example. in madison county, florida, the election supervisor has been indicted for election fraud, troy, new york, the election city clerk was indicted for voter fraud. this happens over and over in this country and we can stop it if we take common sense steps. hess host june fund, joining us from new york, also on twitter, c-span/wj. marilyn, our line for democrats, good morning, thank you for waiting. caller: yes, good morning and thank you c-span. mr. fund, you know, what i noticed about the 2000 elections is that "the
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washington post" had a wonderful on the brooks better alliance. are you familiar with that? because thao*fs when republican aide -- that was when republican aides and staff flew down to florida and deliberately misrepresented themselves to shut the recount down and i don't know about you, but i vote in maryland and we have a lot of precincts that are set up to vote in, and it would be very, very hard, since we go to church with -- we go to pta meetings with. so i don't understand all of this with the fake i.d. and voting because there is a difference, sir, between voter registration and actually showing up at the polls. host: thank you for the call and john fund, your response. guest: well, i agree that most of the voter fraud in this country is absentee ballots but voter
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impersonation can certainly take place and it's very easy. bottom line in maryland there is nothing preventing you from voting in any precinct in the state and even though there's a list, you can county in one county and next day be in the next county and vote there. maryland laws are loosey goosy. yes, there's a lot of dispute on both sides about what happened in florida. there were protests led by jesse jackson who was demand thank only a few counties recount their votes, not the whole state, there were people flown down to protest that the recount's happening -- recount was happening properly but nun of the officials said they were influenced by the protests, whether from the left or right. what does remain is the bitterness and anger which i want to avoid because if this election is as close as 2000 we're going to see florida-style meltdowns in more than one state and this dispute could go on at least as long as florida did. host: john fund, joins us
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from new york. steve on the phone from bellingham, washington, good morning. caller: good morning. my question is washington state -- i heard one of the comments saying we should have voter day, not voter month and all of washington and all of oregon has turned to a mail ballot system. i was wondering what you think about it. i support one day myself. but wondering what you think about that. guest: my sister lives in oregon and she finds it strange that if she votes up on election day to vote, there are no polls. oregon's system hasn't gone up, the center for the study of the american leak toreat has shown that. i think the oregon system is flawed because there is really a lack of ballot security, there's a lack of chain of custody in the ballots collected at the voter collection centers where people can drop off the bail-in ballots rather than mail them and where they're delivered.
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in addition, you know, all of these ballots are sent in by the postoffice. i don't want to denigrate the postoffice but let's just say it doesn't have the finest reputation for delivering 100 percent of the mail accurately and in a close election a few votes that aren't delivered properly through the postoffice, well, that could swing the election. in addition, if you have every ballot cast mail in, you can't take into account last minute debates, last minute scandals. in 1992, bob packwood won in oregon, even though 10 days before the election, a big scandal broke in the portland oregonian about his horrible relations with women, how he had mistreated them and harassed them. well, it turns out that it is possible, because so many votes were cast early in oregon even back then that he won because the people who had cast their votes early not knowing about the scandal couldn't take their votes back. so i think that the early voting is fine if you have a legitimate reason, but extending it now to a point where north carolina is already voting, iowa is about to vote, i think that's just
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wrong, because it cuts off the debate and the real 10or and point of the campaign, which is to try to present the evidence to people and convince them to vote for one candidate or the other. host: should they move the voting day from say tuesday to a sunday? guest: well sunday i think you'd have real religious objections. saturday is the day that's most talked about, and even there you'd have some religious objections from orthodox jews. look, that's a point that andrew young, the former mayor of atlanta, has talked about, moving the voting day to increase participation. i'm open to that. but it would require a wholesale change. i think we have to talk about what's possible in the near term because we're facing an election in 60 days, and something like that would take years to implement. host: let me have you listen to what the attorney general eric holder said as he spoke before the congressional black caucus this past may on the issue of voter fraud and also sroeder identification. >> [video clip] >> we're also working to uphold the integrity of the
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system and i want to be clear, no form of fraud has been or ever will be tolerated by this administration, this justice department. >> [applause] >> from my early days as trial attorney, the justice department's public integrity section i've been proud to stropbdond the front lines and i understand the importance of prosecuting cases whenever they arise. i also know firsthand what so many studies and assessments have shown, that making voter registration easier is not likely by itself to make our elections more susceptible to fraud, and while responsible parties on all sides of this debate have acknowledged that in-person voting fraud is uncommon, any allegation of its occurrence is and will continue to be taken seriously. ho owes your reaction to the comments of the attorney general. guest: well, very high minded and commendable but unfortunately the facts argue against him.
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julie fernandez, a top official in the justice department has been quoted as telling fellow colleagues of the justice department we're not going to enforce certain laws designed to crack down on voter fraud and voter imperfections because we're not interested in that. look, the federal government gives money to the states to clean up voting machines and voting systems. as part of the deal they're suppose to make sure the voter registration rolls are as accurate as possible. missouri refused to clean up the voter registration rolls. there were 40 counties where there were more people registered to vote than adults over the age of 18. the bush administration sued missouri saying you have to clean up your voter registration rolls. they were on the verge of winning that case when the obama administration took office and they dropped that case against missouri. suddenly. just like they dropped the new black panther voter intimidation case almost completely. and ever since then, the obama administration has shown no interest in impacting voter fraud, instead they've tried to block voter i.d. laws that are supported by 74 percent of the american people,
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according to the latest "washington post" poll, including 65 percent of african-americans. look, voter i.d. is common sense. you have to have voter i.d. to buy sudafed, get married, travel, enter a federal building, to talk to eric holder. bottom line, voter i.d. is something that is part of every american's daily life. there may be a few people who don't have a photo i.d. or a government-issued i.d. i say let's get them one. andrew young whom i quoted earlier, mayor of atlanta, former u.n. ambassador, confidante of martin luther king, he says if you don't have an i.d. in this life, in america, you can't participate in american life fully, you can't travel, cash a check, collect welfare benefits. let's get people an i.d. and the number is far smaller than people who claim, like the brennan summer -- center, that 25 percent of african-americans don't have an i.d. that is patronizing, ridiculous, and if will people who don't have an i.d., all the laws say there
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should be a free one. georgia tries to send out mobile vans and get people an i.d. i say let's have everyone have an i.d., everyone participate, but also an i.d. will show that you are who you say you are, because look, there are 2 million dead people on the voter rolls of this country according to the pew research center that argues against eric holder's statement that voter registration fraud can't lead to voter fraud. you can vote in the name of a dead person easily. they're not going to complain. and you'll never know about it. this could be a problem of very significant proportions and there's no way of knowing unless someone confesses. host: alice has this point related to everything we've been talking about, john fund. how many people in the u.s. are eligible to vote but don't? i hope you're working even harder to get those people to the polls. i think the last general election, 2008, only about half of eligible voters in fact cast their ballots. guest: well, 61 percent voted in the 2008 presidential election, of all eligible voters, that was the highest
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since 1964, so we saw a real uptick last time. part of it because of the enthusiasm the obama campaign generated and the historic nature of having the first african-american elected president. i want everyone to vote. it's einvestigationy to vote. you can vote by filling out a postcard and mailing it in, you can vote by absentee ballot by sending in a postcard and requesting an absentee ballot. in many states you can vote early, in some states, you can vote right now, and so it's eeasy to vote and i encourage people to vote. but i want people to vote who are legitimate voters. and i don't want to color the election with a cloud of suspicion that i think damage -- damaged the bush administration after it came into office in 2001 because of all of the hubbub about the florida recount. i don't want that to happen with the next president, whether it's romney or barack obama serve ago second term. host: let me go back to your book and there's one point i want you to elaborate on and this is based on "a dirty
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little secret" in which you pound out who's counting, this, republican-based voters are middle class and not easily induced to commit fraud while, quote, the pool of people who appear to be veil and more vulnerable to an invitation to participate in vote fraud tend to lean democrat". >> larry sabato makes an important point, is that voter fraud can happen in both parties. i don't think either party has the monopoly in honesty. political parties have power, they can tempt people to stray whatever party they're in, but there used to be republican machines, chicago, philadelphia in the 1950s, long island, new york until about 10 years those and those republican machines did steal votes but those republican machines have collapsed, they've been replaced by democratic machines in many cases and they steal votes now. chicago is infamous, philadelphia is infamous, st. louis is infamous. in those machine cities the saddest victims of voter fraud are minority members of that society, that suffer
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from bad public schools, bad roads, bad services, and they try to change the system and city hall steals the votes from them. davis, the former democratic congressman from alabama, seconded barack obama's nomination for 2008, although two weeks ago he spoke at the republican convention saying he's now favoring mitt romney, but he has told me as former democratic congressman representing the place in selma, alabama where all of the voting rights struggles started, what he told me is there are political machines in counties in alabama that routinely steal votes and they keep minority voters down. they're often machines run by minority voters, sometimes run by white machine politician and they basically destroy the right to vote and he said look, i know that the voter fraud happens in my area. that's real voter suppression, when you have people trying to change their government and have the vote stolen out from under them. voter suppression can happen in two ways, it can mean we're preventing you from
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voting and stealing enough votes that you can't change the involvement -- the government, no matter how bad it is. host: john on the line from lancaster, pennsylvania, good morning. caller: good morning steve. this is the best example i've seen maybe in a year of the need for you guys to have more 2-person panels. this fella is throwing out fact after fact after fact just burying us with stuff. who knows if it's anecdotal, if it's true. he appears on fox news. does he appear on msnbc, cbs? >> guest: yes. sir, i was on face the nation a month ago on pbs, face the nation. caller: steve can you tell him to be quiet for a second? he has come up with all these reasons. now let's look at what's gone on with voting. i mean, alec, the american legislative exchange council, has been trying to do this for years. and they're behind the scenes on a lot of this stuff, people aren't aware of it. it's c-span's job to bring this out.
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that's why we need another analyst -- panelist to counter these things. they still talk about acorn. acorn hasn't existed for four years. talk about ken pwhr-bgwell who screwed around in ohio in the '06-'08 elections, trying to change or prevent people from voting by changing the type of paper they had to send in their registrations on. ask him about joe connell who was rove's righthand man who could have testified or was scheduled to testify in '09 or '10, somewhere in there, about voter fraud in ohio that swung the election for bush instead of kerry, and the guy mysteriously died in a single-person plane crash two days before he was supposed to talk in court. host: a lot of issues on the table, but the great part about this program is the
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viewers often provide the balance to the guests. we should also point out alan colmes is going to join us in 10, 15 minutes, he's out with a book called "thank the liberals". john fund, you can respond. guest: you've had guests from the advancement project that oppose voter laws and i commend c-span for having a wide range of opinions. i appreciate the caller telling me to remain quiet even though i was simply answering his question as to what shows i appear on but now that i can have my say i will simply tell him, mysterious deaths, i don't track mysterious helicopter theories, and usually it's a tragic coincidence. i'm not going to go there. you know, i don't go anywhere near controversies, those -- birther controversies, those are ridiculous, and as for the facts or they can't be verified, he didn't raise a single fact that i mentioned that is inaccurate, and i just don't understand where he's coming from, if he wants
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to argue with me, he can present specific facts that i indicated, and he can say that they're inaccurate. but i mean, i did the book. my co-author, a former justice department official and federal election commissioner, wrote the book with me. the book is extensively footnoted. fe wants to challenge the facts, go ahead but don't allege they're inaccurate without evidence. host: from san clemente, good morning. caller: and good morning. i have a couple of things. how many people have been arrested for voting twice? and my second question is -- it's not a question. it's a comment in regard to the 2000
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any other country about how they cast their vote. host: thank you for the call, two points. john fund, your response. guest: well, the book which i believe is by vincent bugliosi is certainly an interesting one but i haven't read it recently. as for other countries, yes, absolutely we are put to shame by other countries by with the efficiency in which they conduct elections and the integrity. mexico has a much better system. they have an i.d. card for voting, it has a hologram on it, it has to be scanned, they have a comprehensive accurate voter registration list, unlike the one that pew research center found, you have to dip your finger in ink to show that you can't
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vote twice, canada has an i.d. law nationwide, almost every country in europe requires voter identification to vote. so yes we are deficient in all of those areas. host: should it be constitutionally required to vote, mandatory? guest: some countries do that. australia and belgium fine people if they don't vote. this country was based on individual freedom, and that includes the freedom for some people to forget about politics and get on with what they think is important in their life, whether it's family or faith or church or whatever. so i don't think requiring people to vote -- i mean, we want an informed electorate. if someone chooses not to pay attention to the news, not to pay attention to issues and then decides not to vote, i don't think we should prevent that from happening. i think we should worry if people who are completely ignorant about the election system and parties want to vote and are required to vote. i think we would worry more about that, people just going
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in and said you have to vote and they say you -- eeny, me. ney, miney, moe. >> host: the title of the book is "who's counting" you write who in media seem concerned about the sloppiness of our election system, our current honor rentalistration system in voting and the lax of enforcement in voter laws, to now having counterfeit bills and the treasury department not wanting to be bothered until the printing press is located. guest: there are counterfeit bills out there and the secret service is not proceedinging the president, it's countering currency. we spend a lot of time making sure the currency is valid. if we didn't pay attention to it and i submit we haven't paid a lot of evidence and suspicion that voter fraud is out there, if we didn't track down how many bogus bills there were, you could say on national television, there's
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no counterfeiting problem, how many people have been convicted of this. if you don't look for this, you're going to get more of it. frauder -- voter fraud has an risk-free activity. it's like shoplifting, you can reduce it by 25, 30 percent just like shoplifting if you take simple steps. in shoplifting they put up signs saying violators will be prosecuted, they put up cameras. not everyone is watching the camera but it shows people someone cares. so i think if we can have organizations and there are organizations like true the, which is trying to have a nationwide network of poll workers and watchers and cleaning up the voter registration roll, if we can have groups like that active i think we can make voter fraud a risk activity and not a risk-free activity and therefore there will be less of t at the same time we have to make sure that everyone is allowed to vote, there's no spweupl day, there's absolutely no people trying to prevent people from voting or something people in police uniform stationed outside of polling places. that happened on the
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republican side 30 years ago in new jersey. you have to have that as well. you can make it easy to vote and hard to cheat. we can do both and take this out of the partisan bickering and talk about good government solutions and all the solutions i'm talking about have the support of the overwhelming majority of american people, 74 percent in favor of voter i.d. in the last "washington post" poll. >> you also write for national review. lou is on the phone from war saw, missouri, good morning, republican line. caller: good morning. i would like to ask mr. fund request he could give me the article or the amendment in the u.s. constitution where it says that convicted felons cannot vote once they have served their sentence. and i'll listen to him on the air. thank you. guest: the constitution specifically gives the states the power to decide whether or not felons can vote. it's in the constitution. i can't cite you the specific article, but if you look for it you will find it. that's why we have 50
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different state laws on felon voting. some are too lenient as i pointed out, they allow people to vote from jail, some are too harsh but each state makes their mind up based on the constitution. host: another question about military voteing from rachel on the twitter page, please ask mr. fund about the military vote problems. did you research this topic as well? guest: yes. and some senators have written the pentagon a letter saying we are very concerned that the 2009 law which was bipartisan to try to set up an office at every military base for voting is not being implemented properly. something like only about 30 percent of the absentee ballots that get sent out are returned and counted as actual votes. there have been proposals to let take up offers from fedex or dhl to facilitate the return of ballots but apparently the postoffice has a monopoly on that, the ballots sometimes don't arrive in time, they're not counted then. we should make every effort possible to allow the military to vote, and i don't
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think we're doing that. right now, a small percentage in states like ohio and missouri and north carolina of the military ballots look like they're going to be coming back and i think that's a tragedy. these people sacrifice to protect our freedoms and we make it very difficult for them to exercise their right to vote which is fundamental to our freedoms. host: and jim frye has this point, we've seen it certainly in developing countries, why not use the blue ink, question mark. guest: well, i think -- i don't think in most places we have that much of a problem that we -- with people voting twice. i do think there are some cities where you've had examples, for example in milwaukee a few years ago, you had a park avenue heiress who would show up at homeless shelters and pay people in cigarettes, believe it or not, to go from polling place to polling place because in wisconsin you can register to vote at the polls and immediately vote then. there was a big problem. there was an 86 page
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milwaukee police report indicating that was an organized conspiracy to steal the presidential election in wisconsin a few years ago in part by having people in vans move from polling place to polling place. that's not voting twice but three or four times and she pled guilty. i think we need to have more voter security. we have to make sure the rolls are accurate, absent tee ballot security is made. for example, kansas has a model law, you have to fill out the last five digits of your social security or driver's license number, everyone has one of those, to have your absentee ballot counted, and then we should have voter i.d. laws to make sure that people don't, can't commit what happened with eric holder's situation where somebody is 22 years old, walks into a place, all they do is ask about his name and is handed the ballot. host: if you're interested in finding out what the voter i.d. requirements are on a state by state basis, there is this put together,
8:33 am, click on it and see how it varies from all 50 states. hugo, our last call from fairfax, virginia, independent line with john fund joining us from new york. caller: good morning, thanks to you, and i find this very interesting. i just two sort of comments, questions, for the guest. one is i'm hearing loud and clear what he is saying about that it is a lot -- it's really not as hard as we think to get identification for folks. i'm just curious how we can either break that paradigm or help people understand an easier way for the number of voters to get those identifications. and then coupled with that a little bit is what i think i'm hearing the guest say is that there are a lot of easy ways to vote and one way to overcome the fraud is by getting more voters out there and i'm curious if he thinks having polls -- having the voting day changed to
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saturday could help reduce the amount of voter fraud. host: hugo, thank you for the call from fairfax, virginia. guest: again, i said i'm open to changing the day to saturday. i believe there's no automatic tradition that means it has to be on a tuesday. as for making it easy to vote, look, the pennsylvania voter i.d. law which was just upheld in court and going thereof the pennsylvania supreme court in a few days, the judge looking at that law said look, everybody is going to be able to vote under this law. you have to have a government-sponsored i.d. yes. but there are several i.d.s that are valid, including student i.d.s. if you don't have that i.d. you can vote absentee, you don't have to show an i.d. for that. if you show up at the polls and you've forgotten your i.d. you can cast a provisional ballot and within six days you e-mail, fax, drop off in person some evidence of your i.d. and your vote will be counted, and let's say you can't afford the birth certificate or other documentation to get an i.d. well then you can fill out an
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affidavit that says i am too poor to be able to get the documentation to get an i.d., and your ballot will still be counted just by signing the affidavit, so the judge found there is absolutely no way that someone who wants to vote in pennsylvania under their voter i.d. law can be prevented from voting. host: john fund is the co-author of who's counting, how fraudsters and bureaucrats put your vote at risk", also a columnist for national review, he's from new york. thank you for being with us, appreciate it. coming up in a few minutes, alan colmes, with a book "thank the lib raps for saving america" and why you should. he's with fox news raid oefplt later, stephen cook of the council on foreign relations, as the u.s. reportedly poised to give egypt a billion dollars in debt relief in an effort to aid the country's transition to democracy. we'll focus more on that as the "washington journal" continues. it is sunday, september 9th. we're back in a moment.
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>> america has been patient. americans have supported this president in good faith. but today, the time has come to turn the page. today, the time has come for us to put the disappointments of the last four years behind us. to put aside the divisiveness and recriminations, to forget about what might have been and look ahead to what can be. now is the time to restore the promise of america. >> [applause] many americans have given up on this president, but they haven't ever thought about giving up. not on themselves. not on each other.
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and not in america. what is needed in our country today is not complicated or profound. it doesn't take a special government commission to tell us what america needs. but what america needs is jobs. lots of jobs. >> know this, america. our problems can be solved. our challenges can be met. the path we offer may be harder, but it leads to a better place. and i'm asking you to choose that future. i'm asking to you rally. around a set of goals for your country. goals in manufacturing. energy. education. national security. and the deficit. real achieveable plans that will lead to new jobs, new opportunity, and rebuild this economy on a stronger foundation. that's what we can do in the next four years, and that is why i'm running for a second term as president of the united states. >> find any speech from both
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the democratic and republican conventions on line at the c-span video library. >> i'm just angry. it's offensive to have people take on the position of public trust and then abuse it. and to do it in such a way to -- at almost no notice to the individual. to me that's a thing that's bother some. it's a stretch but okay, you can tell that to me, my job is to do what do you and you do what you do, but they turn to their supporters, people who really believe in this say the government is wrong, they're lying, they're out to get me, they're doing it because i'm fat, they're doing it because i care about you, they're doing it because i'm fighting for poor people, they're using the arguments and the supporters believe them. to me, that is dispickable.
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>> -- despicable. >> colbert king looks at corruption in the district of columbia's government at 8:00 on c-span. >> "washington journal" continues. host: from john fund, we go to alan colmes, author of the book-thank the liberals for saving america and why you should", joining us from new york, thank you very much for being with us on c-span. guest: steve, thank you very much. host: we'll talk about the book and some of the details but let's first talk about the party conventions as the focus moves to the campaigns, the debates and the electoral college vote. where is this race at the moment? guest: right now it looks like there's an bump for barack obama and it looks like mitt romney didn't get as much of a bump as he probably had hoped for. if you look at the numbers he's up about -- the president is up 4-6 points, within of course a two or three-point margin of error and neither the ryan pick nor the republican convention seemed to get a bump and i think as you point out the debates will be very telling in terms of what will happen,
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but it's really interesting, it is the electorate vote, not the popular vote and there's just about nine states that are swing states where joe biden has practically moved into ohio, we just found out, and those nine states, three of which mitt romney just stopped advertising in, michigan, pennsylvania and wisconsin, i don't know if that means he's given up in those states but he's got a very narrow path to victory. he's got to win almost all of those states in order to get the electoral votes he needs, the 270 to become president. host: is ohio similar to what we saw in 2000, being florida, florida, florida? guest: i think so. i think it's both ohio and florida. as i understand t. only about two presidents in the last 30 or 40 years ever won without winning florida. and i think that was bill clinton in one of his races -- was one of them. you really almost have to win florida and or ohio. if you lose both you're in big trouble. ohio in particular has been
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talked about as the key state in this particular race. host: let's talk about your book, our guest, alan colmes, heard on the fox news radio and previously the cohost of hannity and colmes, he's a frequent guest on the forecasts news network. you say, quote, as liberals we must not let conservatives define us. we've heard the myths, conservatives have family values, liberals don't, elect democrats and they'll reach into womans' wombs and kill babies unless the babies are gay, if the babies are gay, liberals will let them live so they can grow up and become teachers so they will turn all the students gay and the kennard that liberals want spending and big government, the knock is this somehow represents them accounts for one of the reasons why some people shy away from the word in the first place. your book is titled "thank the liberals". guest: well yeah, i want to take the liberal back. i think it's been demonized certainly by the right and i think the right has done a very good job. the messaging on the right has been better than the messaging on the left.
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they stay on topic, been good at demonizing the l word so many liberals call themselves progressives. i use the words liberals and progressives interchangeably and the other regressive and by regressive i don't mean republican. i credit republicans for advances over the years. eisenhower helped develop the national highway system. without republicans we never would have had the civil rights act of 1964, the voting rights act of 1965. a larger percentage of republicans voted for those, than did democrats, so again it's not republican versus democrat as much as progressive versus regressive but yes, the liberal, i purposely had liberal in the title of the book to reclaim the word because i think it's a great word, just like the word liberty, which republicans often use, and they both came from the -- come from the same root, liber, which means free, another word republicans or conservatives like to use is liberty, freedom, and liberal have very much in common and often mean the same thing and i think it's liberals who
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have fought for the concepts. host: don ritchie has this point, wow, alan colmes is still alive? i thought sean hannity kept him locked in a enclosesel. guest: i'm out for this particular appearance and i thank sean for letting me be here today. host: let's get to some of our phone calls, gary on the phone from detroit, good morning to you. caller: yeah, hi, good morning. mr. colmes, something i want to bring up is you know, in in -- in obama's convention speech and believe me, i know romney is going to be no different in this respect, but he said if you believe in a country where everyone has a fair shot, everyone does their fair share and everyone plays by the same rules -- i could have choked. guest: why. caller: if you had a friend that robbed a bank and came to your house and you had him out, you protected him, what would you be? an accomplice, correct?
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now, these banks -- and i have read the findings of the senate hearings on the bank ing that karl levin -- carl levin shared and they were found guilty of prosecutable fraud. now obama, he turned it over to the justice department and obama and holder have done nothing to these banks. they're accomplices. they're criminals. romney will be the same. host: gary, thank you for the call. alan colmes, your response. guest: i think we needed to save the banks. i'm not sure obama is an accomplice to bank fraud. i think this president has actually gone after wall street, the people who gave him money to get elected, he has done wall street reform and bank reform. i'm not sure i agree he's an accomplice to a crime. i think it's a pretty extreme statement. you know, there are people who don't like any politicians, think they're all crimes, i don't particularly have that view. i respect your opinion, sir, but i don't see it that way.
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this president has been actually pretty tough in reinstalling some of the regulations that we lost during years of republican rule. host: is barack obama a liberal, was bill clinton a liberal president? guest: it's all comparative. compared to where the republican party is today, probably. i think barack obama, they try to paint him as a radical when he ran, they still do, when he ran for president the first time because he happened to have been in the same room as bill ayres. he's actually governed as a centrist, instead of having single pay or health care, he tried to work with republicans to have something which was much more moderate, among those who, for example -- and i go into this in the book -- among those against health care and health care reform, the affordable care act are not just those from the right who didn't want this kind of reform but many from of the left who wanted a much more progressive reform like single payor or at least the public option. so this president who has, you know, they've reinstalled
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or they kept going the patriot act, he's gone into libya and got qaddafi, he got bin laden, he's killed more al-qaeda leaders than the previous president did, he's been very good on national security which is often perceived as a weak part for liberals, so i don't think he's governed as a far left liberal and of course, bill clinton did what's known as try ang a -- triangulation, worked with republicans, had a good working relationship with newt gingrich and was considered a moderate democrat. so often the word liberal is anybody who is not a conservative but these presidents, the last two democratic presidents, i believe have governedd as gobbed as moderates and that's what you need to do to get the swath of the eelectric toreat on your -- electorate on your side. although bush had neocons around him and moved to the right. generally if you want to be a successful governor and i use
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the word governor in a broader sense you want to appeal to the broader swath of the electorate and govern it as a ken terrorist, not as a lefty or righty. >> host: you similar rise dollars it with these questions, 10, how liberal are you. i'm going to go through all 10 and tell me what the answers are, whether they indicate you're a liberal or should get the aclu card.
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>> guest: let me explain the bananas, what i was talking about was you know, we have a lot of undocumented workers who are in this country, you get paid probably -- who get paid probably much too low but without those workers, we would be paying a lot more for our fruit and vegetables and for our groceries. so to all those who really don't want these undocumented workers who say we ought to round them up and throw them out of the country, if you're okay with paying more for your vegetables and fruits, are you going to complain that your food costs too much? frankly, if we're going to go after anybody, we should go after the employers and make sure everybody gets a living wage. that's what the banana comment was about. host: and if you answer 1-3, you're what? guest: i think if you're 1-3, you're really not too much of a liberal. i think 3-6, you're kind of okay, you're somewhat to the center. 6-8, you're pretty liberal, and nine or 10, you're a
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lifetime member of the aclu. caller: jeff on the phone, republican line, philadelphia, good morning. caller: good morning, gentlemen. i was a democrat until i saw that vote on the floor about israel and god. that's what convinced me i was -- it was a wake-up call and i am now a republican. i mean, that's a little bit misleading there. also, about the finance committees, look at airig holder. he dropped the case on nf global. somebody is going to jail there sweetheart. don't tell me about justice, okay? another thing is, about the republicans -- i mean the democrats, your book ought to be entitled "thank the liberals for screwing america". thank you. guest: maybe that will be my next book. thank you for calling me sweetheart, that's very kind of you. if two words in a platform that nobody really listens to in the first place make you become from a democrat to republican, you weren't much of a democrat to begin with. by the way, i differentiate liberal from democrat. this is about liberals or
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progressives versus regressives. i'm a liberal long before i'm a democrat. if you want to talk about a party platform, the republicans have a party platform with no exception for abortion, even in the case of rape, insist or life of the mother. they want to go to the gold standard, they want as many rounds to buy for guns as you can possibly buy, and they have positions that are not reflected by either mitt romney or paul ryan. the platform committee is almost irrelevant because neither candidate on either side really reflects the views that are in the platform, and i think simply to say because god, although the word faith is mentioned 11 times and the word religion is mentioned two or three times, but simply because the word god is not in the platform or the word jerusalem was not where you wanted it to be, does not really reflect what most democrats believe, and you're not gir religious simply because there's no word god. i mean, i'm a registered democrat but my belief has nothing to do with what they put in their platform and by the way, barack obama
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insisted they put jerusalem and god back in the platform, which they did. so if you want to get upset with democrats because of that, i would guess your belief system is not that idea logically left in the first place. host: jon mcconnell did take your 10 question quiz, he said i passed the test, i guess i'm a liberal. guest: i'm glad to hear that! >> host: let me go to that moment from charlotte, north carolina because it did get attention. we were live with the entire proceedings. let's watch how it unfolded and get your thoughts, alan colmes. >> as an ordained united methodist minister, i'm here to attest and affirm that our faith and believe in god is central to the american story and forms the values we've expressed in our party's platform. in addition, president obama iraqnizes jerusalem as the capitol of israel, and our party's platform should, as well. mr. chairman, i have submitted my amendment in writing and i believe it is
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being projected on this screen for the delegates to see. i move adoption of the amendment as submitted and shown to the delegates. >> a mowing has been made. is there a second? is there any further discussion? hearing none, the matter requires a two-thirds vote in the affirmative. all those delegates in favor, say a aye, all those delegates opposed, say no. >> no. >> in the opinion of the -- let me do that again. all of those delegates in favor say aye. >> aye. >> all those delegates opposed, say no. >> no.
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>> guess -- i'll do that one more time. all those delegates in favor, say aye. >> aye. >> all those delegates opposed, say no. >> no. >> in the opinion of the chair, two-thirds have vote the affirmative, the motion is adopted and the platform has been amended as shown on the screen. host: alan colmes, was that an unforced error by the democrats? guest: i don't -- >> [laughter] ho host that's how fox news channel characterized it. guest: third time is the charm. my view is simply from a purely political standpoint, it was probably a bad idea to take the word god out and not say that jerusalem is the capitol of israel. purely from a political standpoint, why do that, because you know that the other side is going to grab on to it and use it against you. but honestly, do we look to our political parties to affirm our faith, do we
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really think that democrats really hate god is what i've read on some of the conservative websites simply because there was a decision to take it out of the platform? why the platform committee decided to do that, i don't really understand. it was a bad political move to do it, simply because of the way it's perceived and we know that in politics, perception is reality. so they put it back in, but i know that it probably did not sit well with those who already have some issues with democrats, like the caller who may be an independent and if he's that swayable, it doesn't help the democrats in the long term. host: josh morrison has this on the twitter page saying the platforms, in fact, do matter, he writes, and they represent the clearest statement of beliefs for the party. we must take them seriously. guest: let me just say that most americans on the abortion issue, even if they're not prochoice feel there should at least be exceptions for the health of the mother or for rape or
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insist. most people believe there should be exceptions put in the republican party platform. that's not what it says. i don't believe that the platform represents most people in either political party. host: alice is on the phone from georgia, alan colmes, good morning. >> caller: good morning. i want to tell you that i admire you 100 percent. that's the first thing i want to tell you. guest: i don't admire myself that much, but thank you. caller: one of the main reasons is because there was a program that fox news had, al an and colmes. guest: hannity. caller: hannity & colmes and you always stood your ground with hannity, and in your opinion, can you please tell me why is that individual, hannity, is so negative about everything? everything that obama does? guest: look, you've got conservatives that feel about me on the other side.
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if you're a staunch, passionate believer in your point of view, you're going to look at someone on the other side and say why is that person negative. a lot of conservatives and republicans probably think i'm very negative about mitt romney and i have been negative about him because i don't think that's the direction we should take the country. sean is a good guy who is a firm believer in his point of view and has a very different view than i do about what we should do going forward, and you know, it kind of works both ways. so i'm not exempt from those views on the other -- coming from the other side. host: ken weeks says this on the twitter page, mr. colmes, are you and sean hannity friends away from the portional work environment? guest: we've always been friends. in fact our offices are still next to each other. one thing, we did that show for 12 years and i know that, again, if you're ideologically set on one side or the other you can't believe that you could be friends with someone on the other side. look, my book, in my book, there's a blurb from ann coulter, from ron paul, from mike huckabee, all of whom
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who are actual friends of mine, and this idea that you can't be friends with somebody because you have great political differences, in 12 years, when we did hannity & colmes, we certainly had our differences but whatever we did was for the good of the show and our differences were never personal, they were always political and look, we all have in our families people with whom we disagree but we love them anyway. at the end of each chapter i have the talking points, when you're with uncle charlie and he argues about your point of view you have comebacks for him. we all love people in our families. my sister-in-law is monica crowley, a political commentator on the right, i'm married to monica's sister. i love her, i love my mother-in-law who makes monica look like a liberal. the fact is it shouldn't be personal, we shouldn't judge people based on their political views. host: and in fact you have praise po ronald reagan. guest: ronald reagan stood his ground and ronald reagan, at the end of the book i
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quote, ronald reagan, one of his terrific viewpoints where he said i believe, and i still believe, that america is that shining city on a hill. he had a very sunny view of america, he was not a negative campaigner, he wasn't a negative person. i think the great appeal of ronald reagan was he -- was that he had a great positive vision of what america could be, that shining city on a hill and while i disagreed with him politically, how could you have not at least personally felt that this was a good person who was often underestimated by his detractors but really one of the -- wanted the best for this country. we don't have to demonize the other side just because we don't agree with him. host: what is thanksgiving or a family reunion like for alan colmes? guest: there's usually a dry cleaning bill and removal of cranberry sauce. we have a rule, we don't talk politics when we're together as a family. i think it's a lot safer that way. host: we'll go to mike in akron, ohio, independent line with alan colmes. caller: mr. colmes, nice to
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speak to you. guest: hi sir. col i have two comments. first of aurblgs there's an expression about the honeymoon that the president should have. i'm not talking about the honeymoon from pundits, i'm talking about from congress and george burke got that honeymoon when he took office. there wasn't a whole lot of flack when that submarine took over the japanese fishing boat a few months after he took office and some 15 japanese citizens were killed, also an american jet flying over china, clipped wings with another chinese jet, killed a chinese pilot, and hostages were released and bush got no flack for that and to me, i can't complain. there was no flack about that from congress. guest: all right, well it's interesting about a honeymoon because we just found out that from the very moment president obama took office, number one, you had mitch mcconnell, minority leader of the senate saying my number one political goal is to get rid of this president, you
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had meetings on capitol hill with republicans who vowed not to work with this president on any major legislation. it's amazing he got health care passed. when he was against payroll tax cuts, they were for it, when he was for a payroll tax cut which we now have, they were against it. they really had -- it seems today's republicans, and i don't think the republican party historically has always been like this but at least the current incarnation of the republican party wanted nothing to do with this president and it was felt that any legislative victory would go to the president and help him get reelected and they seemed more interested in making sure that didn't happen than helping the american the american public. it's called a no doing congress and they want -- don't want to advance anything that helps the president. host: is ann coulter like that in reef -- real life? how much is an october? guest: ann coulter writes
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great lines and she enhances her true conservatives beliefs with what are often over the top but very funny unliners, and you know, she's a conserve teufplt she's not a liberal making belief. she's a conservative for the sake of coming up with material. but does she really think liberals are traitors, does she think liberals are ruining america? i don't know. but i think that she often in her humor makes her points, much the way bill maher does on the left with stuff you may think is over the top but really underscores her own political beliefs. host: do you -- you call american value as fungible concept. why? guest: because values to a conservative might be, let's say, getting back to the atkorgs issue, which is always a hot button topic, but a value to a conservative could be that fetus is an unborn child and that's murder and my value dictates, conservatives might say, that we should not kill that child because it's a child.
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to a liberal, a value could be well, it's not a child, scientifically, it's a fetus, we don't know exactly when life begins, but in the meantime, let's give women reproductive rights, that's the values that we have. family values to a conservative could be, for example, that an employer should have the right to determine what that employer needs to do to take care of his family because he invested or she invested in the business and has to protect that investment by making certain decisions because it's their money on the line. that value to a liberal could be in league with let's say bill linton's medical and family leave act which allows workers to take a certain amount of time off for family illness or for other personal reasons that enable them to keep their job. so you know, you can look at both -- you can look at any issue from perhaps two side and each side can claim well, those are my values and yet, they can be perceived as
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diametrically opposed to each side. >> host: who is the most liberal in the senate? guest: i think ron wyden is certainly liberal, bernie sanders of vermont, who is a democratic socialist, yet he caucuses with the democrats. certainly senator sanders would certainly meet my criteria for the most liberal. i miss russ feingold from wisconsin who certainly would have fallen into that category. host: maria on the phone, republican line, trummell, connecticut, good morning. caller: good morning. i'd like to address the issue on the war on women and how the democrats keep throwing that around. i'm a republican woman who has worked so hard to raise my kids, i just spent -- sent two daughters who are everybody can tiff $380,000 after tax dollars for college i was making twice what my husband was making and chose to stay at home.
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and i -- you have to concede that the war on women is only for the war on working women and not someone like me. i did a -- i go to 5:30 every morning, made my husband and kids' lunch, while in bridgeport, they get free lunch, minorities, which i think is wonderful. the democrats do not want to help them. or else you'd give them a reason to get out of bed. please concede that if you want to help them, the minorities, which my immigrant families were at one point, instead of saying here's a free lunch, have this poor mother get out of bed and maybe go to the school and make lunch. teach them what we have learned. but this war on women that you are claiming, i have two daughters who are women. what are we, monkeys in a tree? the republican women work just as hard. and mind you, my most liberal friends are the ones that have to get a dry cleaner like you did for your jam at
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thanksgiving, have someone shovel their driveway, mow their grass. i don't need an underclass. host: a couple of points for alan colmes to respond to. guest: guest number one you say minorities when you talk about the school lunch program which has an very successful program ever since the days of lbj, which i go into and thank the liberals and what the great society accomplished. you talk about minorities, these are income-based issues, not race-based issues. these are programs -- you said minorities a couple of times. i don't know which minority you're referring to. but this is about helping the needy and the poor, regardless of what color your skin is. the war on women is not necessarily mean that because you're a republican, you're conducting a war on liberals. the war on women, you know, as expressed by certain republicans who have said that there are different kinds of rape. i mean, you got a vice presidential candidate who wanted to categorize rape as
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forcible rain versus nonforcible rape. i don't know if you've ever had that horrible experience you'd want to categorize it as if there are different kinds of rape. now you got paul ryan saying rape is rape but that's not what he wrote in a bill he wanted to get passed. denying women reproductive right social security considered to be a war on women, telling women -- and i go into the book as well, this they have to get sonograms and sit with a doctor, which many red states are doing and have a doctor explain to them what's on that sonogram or have marginal probes because it's dictated to by the government, when conservatives claim they want less government, yet they want government involved in women's private parts, that's what i think is meant by a war on women. i don't think we'd ever live in a society giving thepate rearcheal nature that i would ever force a man to have to look at an x-ray or force a man to have a prostate examination or be told
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something by a doctor before he could have a certain procedure done. i believe that's what's meant by the war on women. host: back to the book, you say as we become a more diverse nation the influx of new voters will likely lean democratic and will preserve the advances we have achieved. you go on to say this is a major reason republicans have been fighting to narrow voting rights as they know a changing america will leave them trampled by the march of history, the rallying cry of the tea party, when it started, was that they wanted to take our country back. sorry, charlie, but you can't take a country back to an era that no longer exists. guest: correct. i'm always -- i kind of laugh at that phrase helicopter take our country back". i think you've got a -- i think the current republican ticket has been referred to as bush on steroids, in terms of voting rights, you just spoke with john fund, with whom i'm also quite friendly and is a very smart guy, but in terms of voting rights if you actually look at what's happening in some of the red states and even states like pennsylvania and ohio which are purple and you see that there's an attempt to -- yes,
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the notion of having an i.d. in order to vote sounds simple except in many of these states, you have to travel hundreds of miles to get the right kind of i.d., or -- and or pay certain fees to get the right kind of i.d. and when it's easier to get an i.d. for a gun than to vote, and the brennan center at nyu, new york university, has done study after stud agree which has shown that fraud at the voting booth itself, at the polls places, barely exists and the number of times they've prosecuted voting fraud in the last 20 years or so is minimal and only half of those prosecutions ever resulted in convictions, that when you register to vote, that's where you get the i.d. and that's where at the time you register to vote have to prove who you are. but the lack of real fraud at the voting booth and the number of people who are kept out of voting, the net result of these voter i.d. laws is that the people who are kept out are minorities, are the
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poor, are elderly, and people who tend to vote democratic. you have the minority leader of the pennsylvania legislature actually say this is really going to help mitt romney get elected. so we know that there is an agenda here. it's not just simply oh, we want fair voting, we just want to make sure that people have i.d.s. it's a lot deeper than that, and the idea is really the net result is keeping out people who are likely to vote a certain way that republicans -- it's interesting to me that republicans don't want to vote. it's interesting to me that historically it's always been democrats who fought to expand voting rights, and get the most number of people to the polls, and it's been republicans who have narrowed voting rights, just recently, for example, in ohio, there was an issue of whether or not there would be early voting and who would be aieie -- allowed to do early voting and the other day, thursday or friday of this past week, the federal court said you've got to allow early voting for everybody, you can't narrow it to a certain part of eelectric -- lectorat.
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host: john fund was critical of the early voting taking place in states like ohio earlier this month. is early voting a good or bad thing if it's five or six weeks. guest: i think it's a good thing. why not have early voting for people who can't get to the polls, work requirements, out of the country, and zone those in the military. the more opportunity we have to vote, the more opportunity, the wider berth you have to go to the polls, the broader those voting rights are for everybody. host: pra*ut from upbtington, virginia with alan colmes. good morning. caller: good morning. i'm here from wonderful west virginia, and i just had a couple of things i found eye ironic. we had a fellow in the -- from the national review, a libertarian bent, wants a national i.d. card suddenly. i thought that was funny. and then also his main, not so subtle point was about
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10-12 times, he mentioned the word felon in the -- in relation to unnamed specific democrat politician that is had gone to jail, and he kept spewing out this felon word in relation to -- and then mentioned the fact that poor people are the ones that are going to be most susceptible to it. now, i've never heard any such nonsense in my life. then he went on to say, he even -- he even talked about the postoffice. but alan, i wanted to give you a point, but first of all , romney is supposed to be the master job creator. well then why did he get out of that business and decide to become a politician, why isn't he still creating jobs with his hundreds of millions? guest: -- host: thank you for the call and james has a followup point saying that we're trying to get this voter suppression up and running but no matter how hard we try, america keeps laughing it off.
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so on all of these points, your response. guest: we shouldn't laugh off voter suppression. in terms of being a job creator, i think it's a myth that because you have a lot of money you're a job creator mitt romney doesn't talk about his role as governor of massachusetts, he barely talks about his record. when andrea saul a. spokesperson for romney brought up the romneycare which is much like the affordable care act, you had republicans like ann coulter calling for her to be taken off the campaign. it's interesting to me that romney is not talking about what he did at visa -- vis-a-vis jobs as governor of massachusetts. this notion that we've had since ronald reagan, this trickle down idea that if you make the rich:er the money will trickle down to the poor has never proven to be true. i believe it's trickle up. that's what the president has tried to do by cutting taxes for 95 percent of working families, giving a number of tax breaks to small businesses. trickle up is you put money in the hands of people who are going to spend it, people on the margins, living
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paycheck to paycheck where $40 extra a week, which is what you get on average with the payroll tax cut, that makes a big difference and they're going to spend it and you spend it, the more people who spend it, the more demand there is, as you create demand. that's when employers have to hire. trickle up is the answer, not trickle down. the idea of just because you're rich being wealth creators, we have found that businesses are stowing the money. we've got trillions in unspent money. mitt romney can't possibly spend that money he's got hidden away in cayman islands or swiss bank accounts. you pass a point of how much money can you spend. we need to put money in the hands of those that trickle it up and create demand. host: you're an author, columnist, radio talk show host. what do you enjoy the most? guest: i love doing radio and i have a post, alan, and the minute you put something on web, it's on facebook, twitter and
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people are reacting. i love live tv like this. when you're doing something that's live and immediate and you can react to something that's happening at that moment and get immediate reaction on the social media, that is what feeds me. host and that social media includes our phone calls. bruce, baltimore, good morning, independent line, thank you for waiting. caller: how you doing, good morning. i watched the democratic convention and you also speak about how obama captured bin laden and all the praise of how senator obama did such a great job during the war and so forth. i think the credit should go to george bush. george bush is the one that set up all these ways of catching bin laden, setting up going to war in iraq. but all the democrats, all they are like perform colmes, they want to give obama all the credit for all the
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polices george bush set. host: thank you bruce. allen colmes. guest: i think to some extent you're right. i think the end of the iraq war, for example, was already in play when obama took office and in fact president obama kept many of the bush national security people around him like robert gates, the secretary of defense, at the beginning of his administration. so to some extent, you've actually got a point. but in terms of bin laden, you know, there's a clip of george w. bush at one point saying i don't knowy is, i don't care much about him, there's the myth that water board kh-g is torture says john mccain, among others, who was tortured, led to the getting of bin laden, which in fact on george w. bush's watch he didn't get bin laden and also the president who has given credit to the navy seals, even though there are seals now out there speaking out against him, but just like when jimmy carter tried to get the iranian hostages out with delta force and that mission failed, and certainly led perhaps and was the key ingredient in the end of the carter presidency, had the attempt to get bin laden failed, had those navy seals
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not been successful or had we lost any lives of seals in the attempt to get bin laden, that could have really ended the obama presidency. so whether you think he deserves credit or not, had that not been a successful mission, he certainly would have gotten the blame from people who don't like the president and certainly independent voters. there's a political aspect to everything. the getting of bin laden, and -- it wasn't just bin laden, of course, as i mentioned earlier. a number of key al-qaeda leaders are dead on the watch of this particular president, because of predator drones. so you may not want to give him credit, you may think it belongs to george w. bush but it's the watch on whose stuff happens that renowns to the benefit or blame of that particular president. host: joe has this point, the reason for massachusetts being 47th in job growth, he says, because the unemployment in massachusetts already was very low. guest: again, it's on the watch of whichever leader is in office.
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romney did not turn it around. we have a president who inherited 750,000 job losses a month and now he's created about 4.5 million jobs. you may say the president had nothing to do with it. look what president obama inherited, and look what's happened. you want to say that mitt romney inherited a bad economic picture, but in four years he was still 47th in job creation. he didn't increase that particular number. host: mike in honolulu, hawaii. good morning. caller: good morning, alan. i'd like to send my comments to ann coulter, i'm one of the few conservatives of the peoples republic of hawaii. and i really admire her. unfortunately, i don't have fox news, i can't get you and sean. but one point i'd like to make, alan, this so-called reproductive rights as far as
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i'm concerned, when anybody kills an unborn child, it's murder. and also, the lady that got up from georgetown university, that attractive brunette, she gets up there and tells us with a straight face that the jesuits of georgetown university, their insurance company had to pay for birth control pills. and the democrats are using that to pander to women and to scare women into voting for obama. i think it's a disgrace. host: thank you for the call. peggy noonan saying democrats did focus far too much on reproductive rights and women's issues, not enough on jobs and the economy. guest: that's only because republicans have brought up reproductive rights. rick santorum talked about it. republicans pushed back the affordable care act, that's when obama actually moved the
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onus of paying for those -- for birth control, certainly in catholic institutions to the insurance companies. it's the insurance companies that have to pay for it, not the catholic institutions. we also have on a state by state level there, are some states where the church actually does have to pay. in terms of sandra plouffe, the woman to whom this caller refers, she's been demonized, called a slut by rush limbaugh, when she was denied the opportunity to testify before congress, when all she was trying to do was try to make the case that there should be equity for women. if it were men who were running the country and they were being denied rights -- if the genders were reversed i don't think we would have legislatures acting this way toward men, but men call the shots. interesting to me that so many of the antiabortion activists tend to be men as
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opposed to women. i find that quite eye ironic. host: alan colmes who's heard on the fox news network and contributor to the fox news channel and the new book titled "thank the liberals for saving america and why you shall". he's also the author of "red, white and liberal", joining us from new york. thank you very much for being with us on c-span. guest: thank you very much, steve. host: when we come back, we're going to turn our attention to egypt and a reported $1 billion in debt relief. what's next with relations in that mideast country, steve crook with the council on foreign relations here to talk about that as the washington journal continues on this sunday morning. >> i'm just angry.
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it's offensive to have people take on the position of public trust and then abuse it, and to do it in such a way to almost -- to almost no notice to that individual. this is the thing that bothers me. it sounds like a stretch, but okay, you can tell that to me, i'm a journalist and my job is to do what i do and you do what you do, but they turn to their supporters, people who really believe in them and say the government is wrong, they're lying, they're out to get me. they're doing it because i'm black, because i care about you, they're trying to do it because i'm fighting for poor people. they use all those arguments and their supporters believe them. to me, that is despicable. >> tonight on q & a, pulitzer prize winner colbert king looks at corruption in the district of columbia's government at 8:00 on c-span.
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>> washington journal continues. >> stephen krao*bg is a fellow at the studies for foreign relations. let's talk about this reported debt relief to egypt, is it going to happen, what's the backstory. guest: is it going to happen. i think it will look like happen. when hopefully within the next week, certainly by the end of september. this is manager sph* something that has been under discussion since mubarek's fall in february 2011. the problem has been that the united states wants to provide debt relief to egyptians but not as a writeoff, as budget relief for the egyptian government. half testify would be budget relief, the other half would be money that would have to be used by egyptians for things like infrastructure development and jobs creation tkpwrerbans don't necessarily want to be told what to do with debt leaf, the united
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states says we're providing this through debt swaps and forgiveness, we think these are the things appropriate for the egyptian government to do. host: the transition to democracy has not been an easy one. what's the status of it and how is the government doing in light of all we've seen over the last 18-2 four-months. guest: no transitions of transferring to a democracy are easy and you have to remember it's been 18 months since hosni mubarek's fall. he ruled for 30 years and for the 30 years before him were two authoritarian leaders. the transition has been, as you said, a difficult one. it's been bumpy. at this point, we have a popularly elected president, the first civilian elected president of egypt, an islamist, comes from the muslim brotherhood and the freedom of justice party. there is no parliament, the parliament was dissolved by the constitutional supreme court of last june.
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and there is no constitution just yet. there is hope that the constituent assembly that is writing the constitution will produce a draft by the end of september. but there are a lot of unknowns. and thus far, in this transition, morsi, mohammed morsi, have done things that have raised questions about his commitment to a more democratic system. there have been pressures on june lists and editors, questions about the brotherhood perspective on women's rights and their role in politics and economic life of the country. so there remains a lot of questions and there will continue to remain a lot of questions. egypt is engaged in a broad national debate about what kind of society it wants and what kind of government it wants and it's going to take a long time to answer those questions. host the first president by moris not to the u.s. but to china, why? guest: this is a signal on
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the part of egyptians that they want to pursue a more independent foreign policy from the united states. whether true or not, the revolutionary narrative about egyptian foreign policy under president mubarek is that it was aligned closely with the united states and that egypt had become -- there is a domestic imperative for president morsi to pursue a policy that is multi faceted, to looks to rising powers in asia, like china, and india. he will also be traveling to brazil after the u.n. general assembly, which he will be attending in new york, although it's not clear whether he's going to come to washington or not. the egyptians want to demonstrate that they are independent of the united states and as a result, can once again be a player in the middle east. host: you're author of the book "the struggle for egypt". as you put that book together and see what's happening there today, move ahead 5-10 years, what will the country look like, what will our relations look like? guest: i think that the transition is going to take a number of years, at least
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five years. i think that you will see a tremendous amount of uncertainty marked by period ic periods of instability in egypt. that is just the nature of a country undergoing a transition in which there is not a lot of agreement on the way forward. the hope is that there will be better economic days ahead for egyptians and that will certainly help the transition. in terms of foreign policy, i think that the relationship with the united states will remain, and it will remain a strong one, but egypt will feel more confident going forward to pursue a policy that is different from the united states, and we already see some instances of that. president morsi went to tehran for the meeting of the alliance over the objection of the obama administration. of course he said some good things while he was there. he criticized syrian president bashar assad and called him an illegitimate president in front of his
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hosts who are bashar al assad's patriots, so he did say good things and they accrue to morsi's benefit and was appreciated in other places. but i do think, in speaking with members of the new egyptian government, they will want to hold the united states more accountable and the united states is not just going to get its way as a matter of course in requests from egypt to do various things and carry washington's water in the middle east like mubarek did. host: our guest is steve cook, you can send us an e-mail, or join us on twitter, c-span/wj, news of the morning, we've been following this war in syria, which has an civil war, and how serious is it, and what, if anything, can the u.s. do? guest: well, i don't think that it being an all out civil war is actually news. we've been in a civil war
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situation in syria for quite some time now. it is an unfair fight, and syrian activists and opposition will say that it was a war that was forced upon them by the regime, that this is not a classic case of brother fighting brother. it's the regime's use of overall force, left with no choice to respond. but this is a horrific, tragic situation in which many people are going to die. there was a time when i believed that the united states could intervene in a constructive way. now that we are in an all out civil war, it is a question whether the international community can do much more than provide relief for syrian refugees who are amassing in turkey, jordan and lebanon. this all out civil war is going to go on for a long time, even after assad falls. it's likely that the factions will fight it out and it may just be one of those situations, unfortunately,
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where we have missed an opportunity to do quite a lot of good. host: and a couple of points, you're saying he will fall, and the question is not if but when? guest: we've been hearing it's not a question of if but when for a long time. host: even this week, the secretary of state, hillary clinton, saying the secretary of state will meet with him but only after he steps down outside of syria. guest: people have been predicting assad's fall for almost a year now. i think that as long as there are people who are willing to sell him bullets, the iranians and russians and people willing to pull the trigger on his behalf, he has a fighting chance for sticking around. of course, i don't think that it's going to -- it's going to be long time before someone can claim control and impose their political will on the country. he certainly can't. host: so what are the options for the u.s.? or are there no options in terms of syria? guest: at this point, it doesn't seem to be there are many options. when six, nine, 12 months ago
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there was an opportunity for the united states to intervene before an all out civil war, before the emergence of foreign elements in the fight in syria, the united states decided that this was too complicated a mission, and too difficult a mission, it was untenable, there was no appetite among nato allies and the international community, so the idea was to find some sort of diplomatic solution to the problem, to encourage the syrian opposition, which is fractured, to become more unified, and from there, work toward some sort of political or diplomatic solution. i think it was clear, though, that all of assad's incentives were to fight on and unfortunately, that's what we have seen. at the beginning of 2012, only three or 4000 people had died, now we're up to 23,000 people have been killed in this conflict and many more are likely to die: .
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and paying for subsidies, fuel and foodstuffs that many
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egyptians rely on to survive. this includes the eve remittances from egyptians working abroad. certainly, tourism has suffered dramatically. i am someone who goes back and forth to egypt quite often. there are no tourists in egypt. there are plenty of people like me. millions of the egyptian tourists come to see the antiquities of egypt and the experience of this great civilization. they are just not there. so, egypt is in desperate need to reach some kind of deal. a couple weeks ago, they said their work $40 billion in investment. this is largely sigma -- signaling to the international
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community that egypt is a safe haven. then there's the international monetary fund. the egyptian president has requested $1.4 billion from the international monetary fund, but it is strictly politically. the international monetary fund is not popular in egypt. it is blamed, along with american administrations, for being the authors of economic reforms that president mubarak undertook that essentially impoverished the country. they are very concerned about devaluation of their currency, the removal of subsidies that, as i said, helped egyptian survived. -- help egyptians survive. there is a concern about foreign domination. the imf is seen as another in a succession of foreigners who
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have come in and told egypt what to do with its economy. host: good morning. thank you for waiting. >caller: my question is how the united states senate for given egypt of the $7 billion loan -- now, today, as of today, we have a new president there in egypt. i was born there, but i was raised in this country. this gives me a more open opportunity to understand what the middle east people cannot understand. i have a question. even though my wife was a supporter of on more said not --
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anwar sadat, i was against him for going against jerusalem, because that is an occupied country of palestine. the current situation is the arab countries have to be united as one because they are all mediterranean, mediterranean greeks and mediterranean battalions, and so forth. all of them have great food, great cultures. -- mediterranean italians. we are changing that to a group of hateful people with religious codes. i understand what that is and i do not appreciated. host: we will stop you on that point. thank you for calling. steve cook? guest: i think what the caller is getting at is with the uprises and changes in the
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middle east, the government is not going to be peaceful. the government is going to create instability in the region. i do not think that is necessarily a foregone conclusion at all. certainly, there is reason to be concerned from the perspective of the united states in its foreign policy or the perspective of israel for what it will mean for foriegn policy or israeli security. at the same time, it is not a foregone conclusion, as you could see yesterday in sanaa, the egyptian forces undertaking what they call operation sanaa to establish some security. it was very good coordination between egyptian and israeli armed forces.
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this does not necessarily mean we will see instability in the region. host: to go back to our first economy andvinen the the war, why would egypt ever try to overstep its bounds with the u.s.? did it do that? guest: i do not think the egyptians are interested in overstepping their bounds. nor do i think that they have. i do think they are interested in projecting an image that is independent of the united states in policy. that is making it more clear that in addition to coming to the united states, president morsi is going to seek economic relations with the indians, others. there is the economic imperative in that. but it shows the egyptian people that things have changed since the uprising with his election.
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host: we are speaking with steve cook, the council on foreign relations. caller: as the other caller said, in coming from the same part of the world. 57 years or more, actually, we supported israel just like an international moment -- international bully. we have spent millions of dollars supporting a country that never appreciates what we are doing for it. and they never honored the way we were treated. all of them actually could lead us into very peaceful countries have now -- we are talking about iran. ok? which i am from iran, too.
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it is just a disagreement or conflict between two and governments. iran, israel, and america. when you say iran or iranian, you include people, too. host: thank you. guest: the caller is talking about one of the most difficult policy decisions facing the obama administration and possibly the next administration, whether it is president obama or governor romney, and that is the iranian nuclear challenge. as the caller rightly points out, israel has benefited from a significant amount of american aid over many, many years. but it is concerned, and i think quite rightly, about what an iranian nuclear weapon would mean for their own security. is a question of the wisdom of an attack on the iranian nuclear facilities, whether this would
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deal a blow to the iranians. certainly, it would delay it significantly. or wooded accelerate the program, and what would it do -- or would its accelerated program, and what would it do to the iranian regime? in the policy communities around those two countries -- i do not think anybody has lost sight of the fact that the iranians are bold as well. they, too, have their own view of their own security. if you look at it in a purely objective manner, iran has a strategic interest in developing nuclear technology. they feel they are surrounded by the united states and hostile neighbors. if they look at the north korean experience, it is a lesson to be learned about what happens if
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you do proliferate nuclear weapons. i think it is a debate that will continue. quite frankly, i am pessimistic about a diplomatic deal. united states and iran are very far apart on what each can minimally give to the other. that does not necessarily think -- mean i think that there should be an military strike on iran. but there is contention around iran from nuclear program. host: steve cook got his doctorate from the university of pennsylvania. we have this question -- guest: it is an interesting question. the council was of the military and spoke in the name of the military. but there is a difference.
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i think over the course of 18 months, the senior leadership of the supreme council, the way in which they handled the transition deeply affected the way in which other egyptians viewed those two events. that is separate from the military. and we see egyptians holding in very heart -- high regard as defenders of the chips sovereignty -- egypt's sovereignty, the crossing of the suez canal, the war with egypt, the greatest modern military achievement is something that remain sacred to many in egypt. and it restores egyptian honor after 1967. there is a separation between the two. i think the reason why the younger second rung of officers was willing to ultimately pushed
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out in cooperation with president morsi was because there was concern that the actions were affecting the military threat large. host: our next call is from seattle, washington. good morning. caller: good morning. oh, my goodness. i am just curious in the long run if the people in egypt have so much resource-wise, if without its flaws -- islamism or americanism, and they make a life for themselves? or are we doomed to be guided by some sort of ism? guest: it is a great question. if you look at the uprising, it was about many things. but basically, it was about
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dignity and national empowerment. one of the things the protesters were chanting at critical moments of the uprising was " hold of your head. you are egyptian." and think that is a motivating factor for people to come out and demand change. they wanted dignity. one of the goals was egyptians who built egypt themselves, develop a new system of government -- who built egypt themselves, develop the new system of government. president obama give -- gave a very big speech about the error spring in may 2011. -- the arab spring in may 2011. virtually no egyptians paid attention to it. they have not paid attention to the issue of debt repayment because many want to pursue a new politics, free of foreign interference.
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host: $18 billion to invest in egypt. is it a good investment? guest: i think it is a good investment. they plan to invest in the energy sector as well as the resource sector. certainly in the resource sector, it will be abuna. -- it will be a boon. egypt has a lot to offer in terms of the energy sector. not that it does not have its own resources. but the suez canal -- 10% of global trade goes through the suez canal. it is absolutely a terrific investment. it is an investment. it is not an imf loan. it is not an american lung. it is an investment in the country. that is what egyptians want. this $18 billion -- and
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additional investment comes to egypt, i think egypt can be very successful. host: for those who see the images of a terrier square -- tahrir square, for americans going to egypt, how safe it is -- how safe is it for them? >guest: it is very safe. tahrir square is once again a traffic circle. is a great time to go. you will have the pyramids all to yourself. the egyptians are certainly wonderful and welcoming. they want foreign tourists back in their country. host: on the status of president mubarak, where is he? what is his health? guest: he has been declared dead any number of times over the last few months. he is in the present, which is
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ironic because many of his opponents were in the prison for many, many years. he remains in the prison hospital. host: what did he flee the country? why did he not seek asylum somewhere else before being captured? guest: i think president mubarak was torn about whether he was or was not the president when he took flight. from what i understand, it took a second phone call from his longtime intelligence chief to inform him he was no longer the president of egypt. of course, when he left, he took all of his secretaries and courtiers and entire staff with him. there was also a certain amount of pride. he emphasid that he had been a servant of egypt for most of his life and that he would not be
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humiliated like the former leader of to nietzsche -- tunisia you had to fly around the mediterranean before someone let him in. that country was ultimately saudi arabia. host: good morning. thank you for waiting. caller: i just want to say the american people are burned out on the middle east. we are tired of our money going over their. you guys don't want to talk about the thousands of coptic christians who have been killed, the 800 churches that have been burned, and yet you still want to keep pouring our money in their. as a christian, american, and of i says -- and a vet, pullout, take our money out of there, and if you want to give them food aid, that is it.
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9/11, they were all giving out candy. they were happy about what happened to america. guest: i understand the sentiments of wanting to come home. it has been a long decade of u.s. involvement in the middle east, beginning with 9/11, the anniversary of which is coming up on tuesday. the uprisings, the intervention in libya. it has been a long and difficult streak for the united states in that part of the world. as far as our money goes in terms of egypt, i think this is money well spent first of all. the money that would go towards the debt relief is money that has already been allocated. and the $1 billion is not actually $1 billion. if you value it on the international debt market, it would certainly be a lot less
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than that. but egypt, investing in egypt -- it is the largest arab country by population. and it is strategically located. and the consequences of a collapse in egypt are far greater than the relatively modest amounts of money that we actually spend their. the caller raised the issue of the coptic christians in egypt. they represent -- best estimates are 9%, 10% of the country. they are well integrated into the political, social, other aspects of the society. but there are tensions. there was an incident between a christian man and a muslim dry cleaner. erupted into a violent episode. this is in many ways something egyptians have been living with for a long time and will continue to live with. it is also the function of the
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manipulation of the sadat era and the mubarak era. there are the worst interpretations of islamic ideology developed for political interest and ultimately it has made it easier to whip up anti- christian sentiment. the real egypt, the egyptians i have come to know and love, are the aegis that you saw in tahrir square during the uprising where it did not matter if you were christian or muslim or male or female, what your political views were. they were demanding change. the most important changes they were demanding more changes for freedom and liberty and justice, things that we all hold dear. host: if you're listening on c- span radio, our guest is steve cook, council on foreign relations. he also worked at the brookings
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institution in washington institution for near east policy. good morning. host: -- caller: good morning. that last caller had it right on the head. with the election and stuff, i just cannot see what the american people would change administrations, because when you change administrations, you are changing sectarian states -- secretaries of state and i think this lady is doing a good job. if we elect another republican president we will experience another 9/11. i think right now should hold tight and keep this president in place and role for another four years. thank you. host: one thing is clear. hillary clinton is stepping down regardless of what happens. she has already indicated that. guest: that is what she said. i would not go so far as to say
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governor romney would have another 9/11. i do not think the republican party and george w. bush brought 9/11. but the republican party does have a different view of the issues that confront the united states in the middle east. when it comes to uprisings in egypt and other parts of the world, governor romney has indicated very similar positions and statements -- and made statements similar to what the obama administration has been saying what these uprisings were going on. in particular, governor romney supported president obama's position during the early uprising's. it is true they have different positions on iran. they have a different position when it comes to syria. and the possibility of intervention in syria. but by and large, i think we should separate the rhetoric during the presidential election campaign from foriegn policy. pretends to be more continuity
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in american foreign policy -- there tends to be more continuity in american fault -- american foreign policy than you would think if you listen very carefully during the election campaign. host: governor romney said his first foreign trip would be to israel and the middle east. president obama said he would visit israel for the first time since taking office. would either have a different approach? guest: certainly, i think the difference in tone when it comes to israel and the arab-israel conflict. romney is trying to capitalize on the fact that president obama has yet to visit israel. but that is not to say obama has not been a solid, strong supporter of israeli security peeping is released by their own it mission say that -- israeli security. israelis say by their own
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admission this administration has been better to them. this administration has wrapped up intelligence cooperation. the stuxnet virus and other attacks on iranian nuclear program are believed to a been done in coordination between the united states and israel. and the united states has put together a broad based regime of sanctions against the iranians. at the same time, there have been problems with the relationship between added states and israel. much of it is over this question of israeli settlements in the west bank and what that means for, alternately, a two-state solution and peace between israelis and palestinians. certainly cover -- governor romney has a different perspective on that the president obama. i think we are all committed to israeli security, without a doubt.
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host: republican line, tx. quick question? caller: thank you, c-span. i have a perspective that is different. i grew up outside the u.s. my perspective is we let these countries evolve. there is somewhat of a democratic said up -- set up coming up. when we go overbearing and take this neo-colonialist approach that some people perceive over there, i think that is what gets into trouble. host: we just have a minute or two left. your response? guest: i think the right thing to do is to wait for the egyptians, the technicians to -- tunisians to ask us. that is what has happened with the imf. president morsi has specifically
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asked for money from the international monetary fund. but i think the caller is right. there is the perception on behalf of the recipients that there is a neo-colonialist approach. which is why we have to be very careful. host: the state of the relationship between the u.s. and egypt is what? guest: the state of the relationship between united states and egypt will remain good, but the egyptians will attempt to regain their regional influence. that is a long deadline, but that is what it is. host: steve cook, thank you very much for being with us. guest: glad to be your. host: with the party conventions -- these are some of the issues we will be focusing on tomorrow morning. our monday roundtable will be looking at congress with jason
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dick. we will look at the $16 trillion u.s. debt. robert vix be -- bixby will be there. there will talk about the implications of the deficit. andmickey mccarter will be joining us -- mickey mccarter will be joining as. this is all part of the department of homeland security. that is to mar 7:00 a.m., 4:00 on the west coast. check out our web site on c- have a great weekend. c-span3 -- [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2012]
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>> in four weeks, the first of the presidential debates, live on c-span, c-span radio, and c- next, president morsi -- "newsmakers, with john larson." >> joining us on "newsmakers," congressman john larson. welcome. >> good to be with you. >> and joining us in the studio -- jonathan strong and jonathan weisman. gentlemen, thank you for joining us today at. let's start with the unemployment figures. 8.1% in nine states withob

Washington Journal
CSPAN September 9, 2012 7:00am-10:00am EDT

News/Business. Live morning call-in program with government officials, political leaders, and journalists.

TOPIC FREQUENCY Egypt 26, Florida 19, Washington 18, Alan Colmes 14, Israel 13, New York 13, Romney 11, Pennsylvania 8, Paul Ryan 8, Clinton 8, George Bush 7, Obama 7, Syria 7, Oregon 7, Virginia 7, Ronald Reagan 6, Morsi 6, Steve 6, Steve Cook 6, China 5
Network CSPAN
Duration 03:00:00
Scanned in San Francisco, CA, USA
Source Comcast Cable
Tuner Channel 91 (627 MHz)
Video Codec mpeg2video
Audio Cocec ac3
Pixel width 704
Pixel height 480
Sponsor Internet Archive
Audio/Visual sound, color

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on 9/9/2012